$9,000 - $12,000 for Hide-A-Hose in a 5,300sf house?

mesquite4811January 4, 2013

Please help. My family just relocated from NJ to TX and we are building a home. My contractor has come back with two quotes for Hide-A-Hose central Vac system, one for $9700 and the other for $12,000. Sounds to me like I'm being ripped off! We had the system installed in the house(4,600sf)we built in NJ 4yrs ago and it cost around $4,000. As much as I love hide a hose, I can't justify paying $9000 + for it. The contractor will not allow me bring my own installer. Anyone installed hide a hose in the Houston area or TX? How much did you pay? Which company did you use?How easy will it be to install after the house is complete? Thank you.

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I don't have specific experience with Hide-A-Hose - but to me it's just pvc pipe, the outlets, and the control wiring from each outlet, to the location where the centeral vac is located. It should be installed before the house is finished.

    Bookmark   January 4, 2013 at 10:25AM
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Crazy. I self installed ours in 4000 sqft for about $1200 in parts and a weekend of my labor. Maybe I can arrange a trip down to you.....

    Bookmark   January 4, 2013 at 12:04PM
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I am meeting tonight to discuss central vacuuming for our new construction. I mentioned to the sales person on the phone that I was interested in HAH and he mentioned that it was more expensive then conventional due to installation. I am not familiar with either system but I can't imagine that it is too difficult or labor intensive in new construction when the walls are still open. Can someone explain this to me.

mesquite I'll post again when I get my quote but I'm in upstate NY.

    Bookmark   January 4, 2013 at 12:09PM
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The piping must me made with long elbows to allow the hose to retract - not really more labor - but more in parts. The piping runs must be long enough for the hose - so my 1st floor location is about 10 feet from the motor but I have a 50 foor hose. So I have 60 feet of piping that runs down the length of the house and makes a very gentle u-turn and comes back to the motor. So the labor here is 3 times as much for this piping run - although long straight runs are pretty easy to do.

The tradeoff in cost is that you need less outlets since the hoses are much longer. I have 2000 sqft per floor and I have 1 outlet per floor. It is a stretch in the very corners but perfectly acceptable.

The outlets+hose are about $400 a piece in parts compared to $20 for a conventional outlet. You still need to have a few hoses and most people probably want 1 per floor. But no question the parts are more for HAH.

You also need a better motor but I think ours was $700. So perhaps our total parts were more like $1600. A quick check for a full kit today is $1680 for 2 50 ft hoses and all the parts including motor. That includes all the special pipes and attachments.

The 3 hose price is $2380 or so and that includes a 240V motor - which is crazy power. So I'd ask the installers why labor is $7000? I think a reasonably skilled person (ie someone who has done 3 or more installs) can do a 5000 sqft house in about 10 hours with 2 people. In TX, I would expect this to be a $20 an hour job so $400 in labor. Even if a contractor makes another $1000 in profit/overhead - you should be in the mid $3's.

    Bookmark   January 4, 2013 at 12:43PM
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I am also in upstate NY. I got a quote from a local dealer for $15,000.00 (for a 5000sq house) for new construction!! Needless to say, I thought that was way overpriced - thanks in part to my research on this forum. I ordered the parts from the Central Vaccuum Store in Florida to the tune of $3,000.00, and with their help, am currently in the process of self-installing. It is actually extremely simple to do.

    Bookmark   January 4, 2013 at 12:53PM
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Wow! I'm in Northern Virginia, which is pretty pricey, and we just paid just over $4000 for HAH (house is 5600sq ft plus 2K sq ft finished in basement) which included -

Honeywell H902
1 50ft
2 40ft
1 60 ft
2 vac pans
air driven accessory kit

There's no way that the cost should be 2-3x that!

good luck!

    Bookmark   January 4, 2013 at 1:22PM
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Obviously, it's hard to know why it's so expensive without knowing how many outlets, vac pans, etc. Each drop adds a few hundred to the price. Perhaps the layout is more complicated than most? Maybe the installer doesn't like to have to think and plan out the hose housing, thus adding a significant upcharge for a PITA factor. I'd call HAH to make sure the installer is actually authorized by HAH. If I was with HAH, I'd be ticked one of my installers seems to be gouging customers. You could also call CapVac out of Dallas (Richardson) to see if he either travels to Houston, or can recommend someone in your area. HAH is well worth the extra effort to make sure you're being charged a fair market price. Don't let this discourage you from HAH. 5 years and counting with mine and I still love it as much as I did on day one. :) Never did love the Turbocat though. ;)

Andi_K, I'd say you got a great price with that many drops! :)

    Bookmark   January 4, 2013 at 7:01PM
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We just got bids for our house 5265 sq ft. All one story so 4 inlets and a few vac pans, etc. the quote was $5000 inNC. I would be tempted to order parts from central vac store and find a handyman to install if you don't have the skill.

    Bookmark   January 4, 2013 at 9:26PM
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PVC pricing is highly based on cost of oil, as I understand it. Shouldn't really be much more now than 4 years ago though.

    Bookmark   January 4, 2013 at 10:15PM
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The prices I listed were current prices. I think the elbow sweeps were $8 4 years ago and are now $9. So sure - PVC is up but $10k range is total gouging....

    Bookmark   January 5, 2013 at 6:49AM
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Thanks everyone. I know now after speaking with a rep at my builders that my builder is adding on to the bids and that's very frustrating. I called an installer myself in the Houston area and his quote was for $5500. I think it's still a little high but I can justify spending that amount.I will rather have it installed while the house is being built but not for $9,000. Please kindly share your experience if you installed yours in an existing house. I've heard some not so nice stories of installation gone wrong. David_Cary maybe I will take you up on your offer........ Did you install yours in an existing house? I'm assuming you had no troubles with the installation?

    Bookmark   January 5, 2013 at 9:47AM
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One other option that an installer suggested is roughing it in now and finishing off later. In our case this would cost about $1000 for rough in. Later you would add the trunk lines and vacuum.

    Bookmark   January 5, 2013 at 12:00PM
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I'm in central TX. Two bids for HAH in 5000 sq ft. were pretty similar -- around $5500 which included 4 inside hoses (1 think 2 50 ft, 2 40ft) a vac pan, a conventional connection to the outside (for vacuuming cars), the vacuum, accessories and installation. It was fairly difficult to find installers with experience with HAH installation, but having seen the rough install (house is not finished) it doesn't look like rocket science. Although I understand your contractor adding some mark-up to oversee the install, it's a shame he/she is trying to gouge you on this -- makes things adversarial for no reason and does not bode well for whatever else is headed your way on this build.

    Bookmark   January 5, 2013 at 10:37PM
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Next question. How is your build priced? Is there a fixed markup (i.e., cost plus)? Marking up suppliers by doubling their price is highway robbery and would make me quite concerned about what else was being upcharged/undercut on the build. Any explanation from your builder? I would insist on seeing all receipts from all suppliers. . .

    Bookmark   January 5, 2013 at 10:49PM
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I just sort of got my quote back. The company that my builder uses is the security system people and they didn't seem to knowledgeable about the central vac and not at all about hide-a-hose. Our house is 2 story 4000 sq.ft. They gave me a quote for $3000 for a traditional system and said that they would charge an additional $100/hour for installation of the hide-a-hose. But the salesperson was also talking about 7 outlets for the traditional system with a 35ft. hose. Not what I'm interested in. I want a 60 ft. hide-a-hose if that will work on each floor.

The power unit that is included in this estimate is for the electrolux PU3650. Does anyone know about this one and if it would do a good job with a hide-a-hose in this size house?

I'm meeting with a different installer that has done the majority of the hide-a-hose installations in this area tomorrow. Hopefully I'll have a better idea then.


    Bookmark   January 7, 2013 at 5:49PM
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